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Between vs. Among - Know the difference

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  • English can be quite tricky at times, especially, when you need to decide the right preposition to use – between or among. Even the greatest writers get confused on the right word to use. So, is there a difference between their meanings or can they be used interchangeably. Let us find out the answer today.

    Among vs between

    Learning the real difference

    English writers often make use of between to refer to two things and among for three or more.


    The fight is now between Billy and Tom.

    The dividends were divided among Billy, Tom and Steve.

    It is quite clear that ‘between’ is used when we refer two things that have separate identity and among to talk about stuff that is not clearly separated or belongs to a part of a group or crowd. However, for English learners this may not sound as the most accurate method to decide which the right word is. 


    Between – learn the usage with examples

    1. It is used to separate two things or people.


    Ex: He was dancing in between Billy and Tom

    I need to catch the metro running between Andheri and Versova.

    2. It is used to describe time that is separated by dates or events.

    Ex: We were living in America between 1984 and 1988.

    3. It is used to bring out intervals that separate two points on a scale.

    Ex: My sons, aged between 4 and 7, play guitar.

    4. It is used to bring out relationship, difference, etc.

    Ex: Can you choose between the two or three colors available?

    5. It is used to keep people or things separately.

    Ex: Let’s keep this information between you and me.

    Among – learn the usage with examples

    1.Among is mainly used to describe undefined relationship or collective relationship. It is used to show that something is a part of something or is surrounded by something.  


    Ex: She was walking among the biggest stars.

    We were walking among thousands of flowers.

    2. We also use ‘among’ in phrases, such as, among others and among other things,

    Ex: Among other things, I like her dressing sense.

    In conclusion

    The bottom-line is to use between for two items and among for a lot of items. This will help you get the right judgment on most occasions. For more English learning lessons, keep reading our blogs. You can join our online spoken English class and learn more about English grammar.


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